'I survived. Others have not been so lucky.'
The Crow Road from Eden is a multi-course literary meal; an engrossing and passionate collection of poems, a travel memoir, and a critical study of poets (and poetry scenes) from across the globe.
The book collects poems written in Africa, England, Ukraine, Russia, the Balkans and the Middle East, organised by location, with an introduction describing the literary history of each country, and the influence that history has had on the author's own writing and life. Tony Howson's journalistic work has given him a unique, front-line insight into all those regions, and created a book the likes of which you are unlikely to encounter again - however far you travel.
'Shadow on a cliff wall in Wadi Rum'
My shadow dances on the face of a mountain,
It moves to the heartbeat of a campfire.
My shadow is my past stretching before me
When the sun is at my back.
My shadow is my future; when long
It stretches to reach high points beyond me.
My shadow is small and still when I am standing
Still and in low light.
My shadow comes to life with a small candle
And dies in the dark.
Tony Howson was born in Slough, 1956, and spent his formative years in Yorkshire and Teesside. He has worked widely as a journalist in both print and radio, and in 2011 was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Journalism from Uzhgorod University, Ukraine. His poetry has been widely anthologised, and his prose has appeared in The Guardian. He now works for BBC Media Action, living a uniquely international existence between Kyiv, Scarborough and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.